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Furry

A furry is the colloquial term used to indicate a particular category of fictional anthropomorphic animal. Put simply, a furry is a funny animal taken "seriously." Usage of the term furry is limited almost exclusively to members of furry fandom or other cultural groups aware of furry fandom; it is not widely used in mainstream circles. The term furry is also sometimes used to refer to a furry fan.

Within the accepted usage of "furry," Roger Rabbit, Bugs Bunny, and Mickey Mouse are "funny animals:" they are anthropomorphic, mostly behave like people, and can be considered the cartoon equivalent of character actors. On the other hand Usagi Yojimbo, Omaha the Cat Dancer[?], and the original Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles are furries (even though turtles don't have fur). They are generally more "realistic" in appearance than the funny animals are, and behave more like crosses between humans and animals. They are sapient, and just as much "people" as any fictional character, but they aren't presented as animals for laughs. For example, the rabbit characters in Richard Adams' novel Watership Down are sapient and talk to each other, but their behaviour and psychology is very closely derived from that observed in real-life rabbits. Other furries are not so closely tied to their animal sides, but there is always serious consideration of it to some degree or another. Andre Norton[?]'s Breed to Come[?] and Steven Boyett[?]'s The Architect of Sleep[?] are other examples of novels featuring furries.

The term "morph" or "anthro" is also used for furries, both contractions of the term "anthropomorph." The name of the animal the furry is based on is often prepended, for example rabbitmorph or lionmorph, to provide a more specific description. "Morphic rabbit" or "morphic lion" is yet another way to describe such creatures.

Furry creatures are often found in games, especially role playing games and computer games. Examples include the race of humanoid ducks found in the role-playing game RuneQuest and the races found in the Sonic the Hedgehog video games.

Much furry interest centers on artistic representations, often cartoon-like, of furry creatures; Yerf and VCL[?] are two such repositories of furry art. Mature, adult, or otherwise pornographic furry art is also known as yiff or spooge[?]. As with many art-hobby-genres, pornographic images are by far the most common, in both the public and commercial arenas.

Comics creator Steve Gallacci[?] is believed to have popularised this usage of "furry" through his association with many science-fiction and comics conventions, and the small-press "funny animals" APAzine Rowrbrazzle.

See also Furry fandom, as well as Ernest Shepard, the original Winnie the Pooh illustrator.

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